09 December 2015

13 of 15

(song no. 13)

without asking whether i deserved it
i found myself writing
a song to the dawn
without opening the backdoor
i knew there would be peanut shells
on the back landing
and i thought of my wife’s easel
and the canvas resting on it
the canvas a living thing
in the way that it would change
and grow in response to the love
she applies to it through brush and paint

i put the kettle on
knowing i would need to turn the flame
quickly down
lest its whistle awake my love from her dreams
dream on my sweet
dream that we are walking along the pond’s edge
dream that the bread falls from our hands
towards the impatient geese
dream of the wisps of cloud
reflected in the pond’s surface

my song to dawn is a song
of my beloved’s rest
as i knot my necktie
and patiently await
the pouring of hot water over teabag
joy at the work she has done
at her easel yesterday
joy at the work she will give
herself to later this day
a song of thanks to dawn
for the new day
and more peanuts tossed gladly
to the jays and squirrels

a song of the play of glancing sunlight
falling among the new leaves
as though light were a thing
newly invented by boyish laughter
a song
of the proud tall birch’s shimmering leaves
trembling in the gentle morning breeze

a song of thanksgiving
a holiday to be celebrated
at all times and in all seasons
and always outdoors
did i think all these things
when i opened the backdoor
baring my soul and opening my eyes
to spring in the yard
or did all these beautiful things
think me?
my heart stirs at the whispered sounds
of morning quiet
dare i drown it out with my oafish noise?
i put the flame out
underneath the readied kettle
the steam-scent of jasmine tea
it seemed i smelt it with my eyes
did i think these things
or did they come to me
rising from the painted ceramic mug?
shall i drink this tea?
and should i not strive to become
one of spring’s finer thoughts?

i breathed in
great draughts of the morning air
and the rich scent of fresh grass
and the second flush of maple blossom

(... aubade)

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